Month: May 2018

Mon. May 21, 2018 – just another manic Monday

70F and wet this am. We got around 3 inches of rain yesterday and last night. Icy cold rain at one point. I was sure we were going to get hail. Green skies and cold winds…

Today NOAA has us in a little pocket of ‘not raining’ surrounded by storms. We’ll see how that plays out.

I did manage a couple of other preps last week, besides lame-o attempts at gardening. I got 9 five gallon water jugs for $11 total. I bought (and overpaid) a CB radio and psu, and antennas. It looked like there were 3 radios in the lot, but there was only one, and 2 empty boxes. I’ve been disappointed by this auction company before, and I think I’ll avoid them in the future.

I picked up a nice mountain bike for $45 that fits me better than the cheap one I already own. Maybe if I’m more comfortable, I’ll ride more. Gotta do something.

And I’ve got stuff to do….


Sun. May 20, 2018 – more stuff to do

86F and 70%RH and we are well on our way to another scorcher here in Houston. Willis Carrier should be a national hero, or at least a Southern one. No one would live in the pestilent swamps of Houston, Louisiana, the Gulf Coast, or Florida without his invention. Never mind the huge swaths of the western and southern deserts, half the country would be mostly uninhabitable if not for him.


Sat. May 19, 2018 – busy busy busy….

Already 76F and 84%RH with clear sunny skies.

Beautiful day to be at the pool, which is where I’ll be.


(with the kids doing time trials for swim team, and getting the facility ready for our opening weekend, and attending the member’s meeting. Probably won’t even get in the water.)

Fri. May 18, 2018 – once more into the breach

Hey, another week gone by, in an eye blink….

Already 78F and 83%RH this am. Boy oh boy, summer is here.

Didn’t get much done on my list yesterday. Too bloody hot. Did computer work inside instead. Did go grocery shopping, and to the Lowes.

Other than work on getting some heat management stuff in place, I didn’t do much prepping this week.

Ebay is still S L O W… I converted to an ebay “store” yesterday in the hopes that it will help my placement in search results. They are pushing for the conversion, and the deal finally made sense. As far as I can tell, it should save me a couple of bucks in listing fees, and allow me to put a ‘vacation hold’ on my sales instead of ending them all and restarting them later.

Garden is growing. Sweet banana pepper number two is ready, as are a couple more stunted tomatoes. Super sweet and delicious, but tiny! Grape vine still has fruit, so I saved at least one from the caterpillars. Peas, beans, and zukes are all still alive.

And now, I’ve got to do some of the stuff I missed yesterday.


Thur. May 17, 2018 – a bit cooler

Seemed a bit cooler this morning when I let the dog out, currently 74F with 84%RH, so I could be mistaken.

Woke up beat down. Kids were exhausted too. The older one had 2 days of standardized testing. The younger is just dealing with her arm in a cast in the heat.

I feel better, and I’m not ‘hung over’ from working outside yesterday. The vest and hat, with breaks, did their jobs I guess. Managing the heat and my exertions in it, is going to be a big thing for me this summer. I have to be able to work outside, so I have to find a way.

Lots on the agenda today. Finish up the Portacool, get to work on the 4 ft fan, get the formwork for the generator pad done, groceries, and grout the tile at the rent house….

We’ll see how much actually gets done.


Wed. May 16, 2018 – copycat, or just raised awareness

70F and slightly less than dewy… sunny blue sky. Seems we had record heat, or nearly, yesterday. Sure felt like it.

Possible package bomb (notably not called a ‘mail bomb’ which was the phrase I grew up with) in SoCal with some serious capability. No other info except that it was intentional. Also capable.

So, two bombs in the Houston area, the previous dead guy with his string of bombs, now this one in Cali… I think the idea of a mail bomb is rising in the public consciousness, and there is clearly some accurate info out there somewhere (not the Anarchist’s Cookbook, which allegedly had purposeful mistakes to kill or maim would be bombers.)

Probably worth a glance, even if probability is low…

Oh yeah, our old friend Ebola is back…joy.


Tues. May 15, 2018 – in a handbasket

70F and saturated. Gonna be hot today too.

Spent most of yesterday driving, and the rest picking thru the detritus of one of the richest civilizations in the history of the world. Maybe. Anyway, as Sarah Hoyt pointed out a long time ago, only in a rich society do you have ‘thrift stores’ as they exist in America. People give away their excess stuff, to others who then SELL it. A good percentage of it was never used and still has the tags on, a larger percentage was used once and put away, some was well used, some is worn out, stained or broken. Maybe it’s a bell curve, I don’t know, but suspect it is. The top and bottom might not be the right size as the best stuff gets skimmed and the worst gets binned.

Still, an amazing amount of ‘stuff’ gets donated to thrift stores buy people who just need to get rid of ‘stuff’, often so they can buy new ‘stuff’.

I suspect this can’t go on forever, and I fear that at some point, we’ll be back to a place where you wear your one or two sets of clothes until they fall off your body, and then sell the scraps. Hope not, but history says otherwise.

Today, I get to do my part as a reseller- catalog, photograph, measure, weigh, and describe the ‘stuff’ I picked up and move it along to the next owner. The efficiency in the system is increasing every day, and it makes it possible to replace the small part, cable, or device you want, without buying new. Or replace your childhood ‘stuff’. Or keep your aging business system running for one more budget cycle…. but some days I feel like I’m picking thru the carcass of a once mighty giant.


Mon. May 14, 2018 – traveling today

72F and dewy. I think today will be like the last couple of days, and get up to 100F, at least here at my house. Sunny with fluffy clouds.

I’ve got to go to Austin for a pickup today, so I’ll be driving back and forth most of the day. Surplus store, here I come! And we’ll see, maybe the Goodwill Outlet, if I have time. I can’t believe what a mess it was, I’ll give it another chance.

Only one news comment for today– anyone else notice how little coverage the knife attack in Paris got? I guess we’re to the point where head chopping in the streets of Europe is the new normal. I don’t take that as a good sign.


Sun. May 13, 2018 – Happy Mothers’ Day

I sincerely hope that everyone here has a Mom they can celebrate. And to the moms here, Happy Mothers’ Day. The most frightening, disgusting, satisfying, empowering, and powerful job on the planet, shaping the next generation. Teach your children well.


Sat. May 12, 2018 – good morning!

75Fand damp this am, with possible rain in the forecast.

I’ll be working on my rent house (a peculiar phrase, but widely used here in TX,) and doing other home stuff today. No rest for the wicked…

If anyone is serious about self-serve medical education for grid down (or any other disaster), Aesop over at has been doing his best to educate us on how to help, without killing anyone. Highly recommended, and very serious. (occasional bad language alert)


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